MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Teenagers hoping to get behind the wheel sooner will have more options.
Many parents and students think long wait times to take driver’s license tests are due to exam stations not being open on the weekends.
Getting behind the wheel wasn’t a problem for Carson Peters. But getting in line to take his drivers’ test was a different story.
“It helps the family out with siblings. A little stressful, but he’s been great so far,” said Vicki Peters, Carson’s mom.
And Carson was one of the lucky ones.
“It took me about an hour. Passed the scheduled appointment I had to take the test,” said Carson. “I know many of my friends that have had to go in at 3 a.m. or something to sleep there, just to get a driver’s test in.”
Much of the blame for the rush hour-like lines falls on drivers’ exams being available only during weekdays.
“It’s too bad. There has to be something. Either longer hours or open on the weekends,” Vicki said.
The Department of Public Safety Driver and Vehicle Services Division is listening. They’re expanding their Class D testing hours as a way to cut down on those lines. Beginning this Saturday, driver’s exam stations in Arden Hills, Eagan and Plymouth will be open for extended weekend hours.
The move will add more than 3,000 weekend appointments until at least the end of the year. That’s in addition to the more than 2,800 driver’s exams scheduled every week. Carson thinks it will help teenagers be more alert when they take the test.
“I’m sure the people that had to go in at 3 a.m., I’m sure that did affect them having to go and take a test at 7 a.m. or whenever the DMV opened,” said Carson.
The state will evaluate weekend appointments in December to determine if they’ll continue beyond this year.
Appointments can be made online. Click on the “Schedule or Reschedule an Exam” tab to make a weekend appointment.